Ottawa Home and Garden Show 2017
Coach / Tiny Homes, EkoBuilt News & Happenings

Ottawa Home & Garden Show 2017

The 2017 Ottawa Home & Garden Show is coming this weekend and we’ll be there! Will you?

Ottawa Home & Garden Show, 23-26 March 2017, EY Centre, Ottawa

Show Features

  • More then 30,000 sq. ft. will be devoted to a stunning indoor garden display and you’ll have the chance to vote on the People’s Choice Award for best garden build 2017.
  • Ultimate Upcycle Challenge: Eat Your Veggies! is putting a fresh spin on the deep-rooted tradition of growing vegetables and herbs. Ottawa’s top influencers are sourcing a pre-loved furniture item from the Re-Store and turning it into a functional and trendy urban garden. Don’t miss your chance to bid on these one-of-a-kind pieces during a silent auction at the show. All proceeds will benefit Habitat for Humanity and help local families.
  • Experts in Landscaping and DIY will provide tips, guidance and inspiration.
  • Kick back and enjoy the show vibe at the new Perth Brewery Beer Gardens.
  • Coach House Alley will keep the spotlight on the new coach house by-laws in Ottawa and feature vendors like EkoBuilt who offer great coach house solutions.

Get Your Tickets

Save $3 per ticket by purchasing them online: Ottawa Home & Garden Show 2017 Tickets.



EkoBuilt's passive house solar engine
EkoBuilt News & Happenings, Solar Power

Your House Needs a Solar Engine, and We’ve Got It

The Eko Solar Engine - passive house infographic

Click to see full size illustration.

We now have the opportunity to take houses off the grid and power them with energy completely derived from the sun. Your home can work smarter and save you money all year round.

At EkoBuilt, we’ve invested a lot of time and know-how into developing the perfect solar engine for your home, and we’ve created a special infographic to easily convey how it works.

This simple, fully documented and proven complete building solution is completely unique and makes it extremely easy for anyone to achieve energy independence. Our solar engine uses the latest available technologies to make this not only possible but affordable – NOW!

The beauty of the system is that you can apply it in part or in its entirety, depending on your situation.

Want to learn more about the Eko Solar Engine?

Click here for full details.

Click here to get in touch with us to explore what you need for your home.


House with recessed LED lighting
Energy & Household Trends, Energy Efficiency

Why you should light your home with LEDs

Whether you’re building a new home or considering retrofitting the lighting in an existing home, if energy conservation matters to you there is only one type of light you should consider: LED lighting.

What are LEDs?

LED stands for Light Emitting Diodes. The following is an extract from How Stuff Works on How Light Emitting Diodes Work:

Basically, LEDs are just tiny light bulbs that fit easily into an electrical circuit. But unlike ordinary incandescent bulbs, they don’t have a filament that will burn out, and they don’t get especially hot. They are illuminated solely by the movement of electrons in a semiconductor material, and they last just as long as a standard transistor. The lifespan of an LED surpasses the short life of an incandescent bulb by thousands of hours. Tiny LEDs are already replacing the tubes that light up LCD HDTVs to make dramatically thinner televisions.

The Recessed LEDs We Recommend

In the EkoModel Home, we used recessed LED lighting throughout the home.

The product we chose to use is from a company called Energy Efficient Lighting based in Markham, Ontario:

4 inch UltraThin LED Recessed Luminaire Round – UTLED-S9W-3KWH

These recessed lights only require 9W of energy and are rated for an amazing 50,000 hours. They retail for about $30 per unit.

For a list of agents carrying these lights, see Energy Efficient Lighting’s website.

Sustainable valentine's day gifts from LoveFresh and other Canadian retailers
Simply Sustainable

Put a little green in your Valentine’s Day

A sustainable Valentine’s Day is fun and easy. We’re sharing our Top 10 List of Canadian inspired eco-friendly Valentine’s gifts and ideas – have fun! If you have one to add to your list, we would love to hear from you!


The CBC offers a great article on why plants should replace flowers this Valentine’s Day: For a more sustainable Valentine’s Day, ditch flowers for a plant.

Seed Cards from Botanical Paperworks

Valentine cards from Botanical PaperworksFlowers and cards are two top sellers every Valentine’s Day.

Botanical Paperworks ingeniously combines this sweet duo into one with their eco-friendly Valentines which are handmade from post-consumer waste cardstock and feature embedded seeds.

Drink Red & White from Connect

Southbrook Vineyards from southern Ontario is very serious about good wine and the environment. Connect is pro-green. Choose any Connect to show you don’t obsess about food-matching, but you do get serious about the environment. Connect White and Red are both made from organically-grown grapes. This Ontario vintner uses lightweight bottles, sourced locally, that are made from glass collected in the Ontario Bag-it-Back program. Available from most LCBO outlets.

Giddy YoYo Chocolate

Canadian-made, Fair-Trade vegan chocolate from Giddy Yo Yo.The flavours are so rich that you won’t mind sharing a bar with someone you love.

Matt & Nat Bag

Matt & Nat purses and bagsThis Montreal-based, vegan company has a commitment to sustainable, eco-friendly design. Materials range from recycled nylons, cardboard, rubber and cork to recycled bicycle tires. Bag linings only made from 100% recycled plastic bottles.

The beauty of each bag is undeniable. Matt & Nat believes you should Live Beautifully.

Natural Beauty Products

LOVEFRESH is a Toronto-based luxury line of fun and natural beauty products that will keep your skin glowing. Think body butters, sugar scrubs, lotions and more.

Canadian Diamonds

When you see the CanadaMark logo inscribed on a diamond, you can be sure that it is completely natural, and free of treatments that are sometimes used to “improve” a diamond.

Red & White Hemp Fabrics

Efforts IndustriesHemp clothing made in Canada by Effort Industries has supplied eco-friendly hemp fabrics (Made in Canada) to environmentally conscious businesses across North America since 1994.

Clothing lines for women, men and kids, as well as accessories, fabrics, and home decor options.

Massage Oils from Saje Natural Wellness

Saje natural wellness offers something for everyone. Ingredients are derived from safe and renewable resources and haven’t been tested on animals. Packaging is simple and made of recycled or recyclable materials. The healing power of touch is right at your fingertips with essential oil blends in an organic, jojoba oil base.

Candlelight dinner? Soy Candles!

Campy Candles are handpoured in small batches using Eco Soy wax and a blend of phthalate free fragrance oils.

Wishing you and yours a very happy Valentine’s Day!

Ottawa Coach House builder EkoBuilt
Coach / Tiny Homes, Energy & Household Trends

Build your Ottawa coach house

The Ottawa Home and Remodeling Show 2017 Coach House Village was a huge success and we were pleased to be a part. We were blown away with the amount of interest,  from the general public as well as the Ottawa Citizen, CBC and CTV (the latter both broadcast from the Coach House pavilion).

We are attracted to the new Ottawa Coach House regulations because intensification of the city is an amazing example of sustainability! We heard lots of great ideas from visitors to our booth who are exploring putting a coach house on their property for the following kinds of reasons:

  • Granny or in-law suite: save $2-3k per month moving from a $3000 – $4000 monthly payment (retirement home) to a $1000 / month coach house
  • Rental unit: homeowners could make 12 to 15% return on investment per year (no more stock market speculation!)
  • Starter home: alternative for kids moving out or starting families instead of moving into an expensive apartment or condo
  • Air B&B: for those homeowner entrepreneurs out there

Apart from urban Coach House interest, there were also a number of visitors interested in tiny house communities run like a condominium and with a shared access road. There were retirees looking to truly downsize and those just looking to start small.

Listening to all these ideas was very energizing and inspiring and we look forward to seeing where the Ottawa Coach House trend will take us.

Learn more

Add your name to the list if you’re interested in taking part in a planned Community

View EkoBuilt’s Coach House plans and materials packages

View EkoBuilt’s Coach House pricing

Coach / Tiny Homes, EkoBuilt News & Happenings

Coach House Comes to Ottawa

EkoBuilt is introducing a series of tiny house models that are perfectly suited to the new Ottawa Coach House regulations but which can be applied by anyone, anywhere.

What better opportunity than the upcoming Ottawa Home & Remodelling Show running January 19-22, 2017 at the EY Centre to find out more firsthand.

Ottawa Home and Remodelling Show 2017

Get $4 off the ticket price

Apply Ticket Code EKOBUILT and save $4 off the regular box office adult admissions.

We’ll see you there!

Additional Resources


Kitchen design on Houzz
Home Building trends, House Design

2017 Kitchen Design Trends According to Houzz

Kitchen design on Houzz

Photo courtesy of Houzz

Design mecca Houzz has released its Kitchen Trends Study for 2017. The study polled nearly 3,000 users who are planning, executing or have recently finished a kitchen renovation. Results point to newer trends like shiplap, continuing ones like stainless steel, and changing tastes in counter tops, as well as custom storage.

We like that kitchen renos have a great way of helping homeowners to focus on their health. A revitalized kitchen tends to lead to a clearer, improved focus on cooking.

Read the full 2017 Kitchen Design Trends Report here.

You might also like:

Kitchen Design in a Passive House
Energy Efficient Appliances for Your Home

DIY Wildflower Seed Ball Kit
Simply Sustainable

Top 10 Sustainable Stocking Stuffers

It goes without saying that most of us have more than we need. When considering gifts for the upcoming holiday season, looking local is a great way to go. The following is a round-up of some gifts with a sustainability focus:

  1. Tree Canada tree seed kits: planting a tree doesn’t get easier than this.
  2. Guide 10 sun powered battery charger: With the Guide 10 Plus Recharger you have a portable, rugged charging kit as adventurous as you are. Ideal for: Phone, GPS, Headlamp.

    Ninja Stars solar LED deck accent lighting

    Ninja Stars

  3. Ninja Stars Solar LED Deck Accent Lighting: Whether you are trying to show off your deck or prevent trips and falls.
  4. Solar LED security spotlight: Sunlight at night-time!
  5. Poop Bags Made with Plants in USA: ‘Cuz the one thing your doggie’s doo-doo shouldn’t do is hang around in a landfill for 500 years.
  6. Planet Earth DVD: With its jaw-dropping, pole-to-pole, high-def footage, Planet Earth is a must-see for anyone claiming to be a greenie or just a lover of this planet.

    Wikki Stix Super from Scholar's Choice

    Wikki Stix Super from Scholar’s Choice

  7. Wikki Stix: Made from simple, non-toxic ingredients (just yarn and food-grade wax) Wikki Stix inspire endless kid (and parent) creativity. Canadians can look in Scholar’s Choice, Staples and other retailers for this classic craft material.
  8. DIY Wildflower Seed Ball Kit: A seemingly rebellious way to add some beauty to the neighbourhood! Retailing at $21 from uncommon goods, this cool gift ships to Canada.
  9. Eco-pen 12 Pack: Write Santa a thank-you letter with a pen that’s made of a cornstarch plastic, which will fully biodegrade in a year.

    Ecojot jumbo journals

    Ecojot jumbo journal

  10. Ecojot Jumbo Journals: This Canadian company has truly sustainable roots. Notebook paper is 100% post-consumer recycled – made entirely from old waste paper in the award-winning Cascades mill in Québec, Canada. All inks and glues are vegetable based, and all black and kraft boards are sourced from sustainable suppliers in North America. Ecojot was awarded the Ancient Forest Friendly and Order of the Forest Awards by Canopy in 2012. The company has also supplied thousands of books to kids in need around the globe with its Buy 1/Give 1 campaign.

Finally, how about a gift with pretty much no ecological footprint but loads of awesome?

Adopt a Star

Can you really name a star? Absolutely. If you know someone who’d be wowed by such a gift, the Pale Blue Dot Adopt-a Star program is the recommended route, as it is a non-profit site that actually benefits Kepler research.

Reclaimed birch flooring from Log's End
EkoModel News

The beauty of reclaimed wooden flooring

Logs End Flooring of OttawaWhile the main floor of the new EkoModel Home has concrete flooring, for the upper level we opted for something different. Reclaimed birchwood from Log’s End in Ottawa makes a beautiful and natural statement for the second storey where our children’s rooms and an open loft area can be found.

Logs End in Ottawa is Canada’s leading supplier of river-reclaimed, wide plank hardwood flooring. The company takes perfectly preserved timbers that have been underwater for generations and fashions them into beautiful flooring and millwork. As shared on the Logs End website:

Every Logs End Heritage wide plank floor starts with the recovery of a log that may have been felled 200 years ago – and which was hundreds of years old when it was cut. And before it becomes a character-filled Logs End Heritage floor, it will be at least another year older.

Recovered logs are cut quickly and then air-dried for many months before then being kiln-dried to industry standards. From start to finish the process lasts a year.

Logs End also makes new-growth hardwood flooring from green certified managed forests, threading their care for the environment throughout their operations.

Pine, oak, birch, hickory and walnut, as well as engineered flooring, feature in the Logs End collections. You can visit the Logs End wide plank showroom in Ottawa:

Logs End
1520 Triole Street
Ottawa, Ontario K1B 3S9